Jonathan Wright, editor in chief, with Claire, a fifth-grader at Metamora Grade School, November 17, 2021
Giving back to the community has been a key pillar of Peoria Magazines since its inception. This was the second year in which I participated in “Be Anything,” a wonderful program of the Peoria PlayHouse Children’s Museum, where children ages four to 14 can explore a wide variety of careers through hands-on experiences. In advance of our “Be a Magazine Editor” session, I was excited to learn more about Claire. “She is an avid reader,” her mother wrote to me, “and is excited to learn about being an editor and the editing process.”
We had a fun conversation as I talked to Claire about all of the work an editor does to tell the stories of a community while ensuring that we always meet our strict monthly deadlines. Each magazine is like a puzzle, I told her, and it is up to the editor to make sure all of the pieces fit together.
This issue is bittersweet for me, as it is the final issue of Peoria Magazine in its current form. WTVP has acquired the company and plans to publish a reconstituted magazine with a renewed focus on business in Spring 2022. I am pleased that our community events—including 40 Leaders Under Forty, Local Legends, Community Impact and Women of Influence—will continue in the good hands of our local public media station.
During my 16 years with Peoria Magazines, I have been privileged to meet so many amazing people in our community—including artists, educators, business owners, government officials, nonprofit leaders, community activists and many others. I am grateful for each and every individual who has read or written for our publications, shared their photography, suggested story ideas, supported us with advertising or sponsorships, and offered their feedback. I want to thank our terrific staff—Chip, Amy and Mae—and all of my past coworkers and interns for their hard work, dedication and friendship. I am very proud of the work we have done.
It has been a tremendous honor to tell the stories of our community over the past 16 years. I have been humbled by the lives we have positively impacted through our publications, programs and events. As I move toward a new path in life, I look forward to finding new ways to contribute to the success and growth of our community. —Jonathan Wright, Editor In Chief